Reading 'can reduce stress'


Reading is the best way to relax and even six minutes can be enough to reduce the stress levels by more than two thirds, according to new research.

And it works better and faster than other methods to calm frazzled nerves such as listening to music, going for a walk or settling down with a cup of tea, research found.

Psychologists believe this is because the human mind has to concentrate on reading and the distraction of being taken into a literary world eases the tensions in muscles and the heart.

The research was carried out on a group of volunteers by consultancy Mindlab International at the University of Sussex.

At home, a child may have large pillow in a special, well-lit corner. Or a child may be given a small chair next to the chair where the parent reads. The child should have a variety of books, magazines, and other print sources available. Ideally, the child should have a surface upon which to write and reflect as well. Inexpensive lap desks are available that would fit the bill.

Their stress levels and heart rate were increased through a range of tests and exercises before they were then tested with a variety of traditional methods of relaxation.

Reading worked best, reducing stress levels by 68 per cent, said cognitive neuropsychologist Dr David Lewis./p>

Subjects only needed to read, silently, for six minutes to slow down the heart rate and ease tension in the muscles, he found. In fact it got subjects to stress levels lower than before they started.

Listening to music reduced the levels by 61 per cent, have a cup of tea of coffee lowered them by 54 per cent and taking a walk by 42 per cent.

Playing video games brought them down by 21 per cent from their highest level but still left the volunteers with heart rates above their starting point.

Dr Lewis, who conducted the test, said: "Losing yourself in a book is the ultimate relaxation.

"This is particularly poignant in uncertain economic times when we are all craving a certain amount of escapism."

"It really doesn't matter what book you read, by losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author's imagination.

"This is more than merely a distraction but an active engaging of the imagination as the words on the printed page stimulate your creativity and cause you to enter what is essentially an altered state of consciousness."

The research was commissioned by Galaxy choocalate to launch a campaign to give away one million books over the next six months.

Article Source: www.Telegraph.co.uk

 

Visit monkeyreader.com's online store to find books for teaching your children/students to read.

 

Other articles that may interest you:

Learning from Memoirs

Teaching Self-Assessment

Reading 'can help reduce stress'

Poor Reading Skills--High Risk

How Children Learn to Read

Ready to Read: Early Literacy Skills

Start the New School Year Organized!

Reading Differences

Top 10 Summer Reading Lists For Kids and Teens: 2011

Outdoor Learning Games for Kids

Brains on Fire: The Multimodality of Gifted Thinkers

How Can Children Be Taught to Comprehend Text Better?

How to Teach Poetry to Kids

It's Important! Read Poetry to Your Children

Choosing Books that are Just Right

The Child and the Well Chosen Book

Learning to Read

Reading Milestones

Teaching Non-Fiction Reading and Writing

6 Reasons to Use Informational Text in Primary Grades

Building Vocabulary

Building Vocabulary: Using Context Clues

Teaching Prediction in Picture Books and Non-Fiction Texts

Picture Books and Illustrator Studies

Improve your English through Reading

Tips for Teaching Autistic Children Reading Skills

Autism and Reading Comprehension<

Children on the Autistic Spectrum: Guidelines for Mainstream Practice

Reading Out Loud with Your Child/Student(s)

Reading Comprehension and Book Reports

Teaching Autistic Children Reading